For Jack Nelson, the term “uphill battle” holds fresh meaning, and it has nothing to do with a tough case or managing a big firm office.

The vice chairman of Reed Smith’s litigation department just got back from a 10-day trek to the top of Mount Kilimanjaro. The steepest part took almost six days, Nelson said. And that required a slow-paced determination. He and another 12 Reed Smith attorneys and staff, mostly from the firm’s London office, hiked about five hours each morning, paused to set up camp and eat lunch, then hiked another hour and a half just to sit, enjoy the view and get used to the elevation before returning to camp for the night. “The trek leader called it ‘climb high, sleep low,’” Nelson said. It was exhilarating to reach the summit 19,341 feet above sea level, he said, and he doesn’t plan on doing it ever again.